Indian Affairs Current Affairs 2018 - Current Affairs Today

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  • UP government proposes renaming Bareilly airport to Nath Nagri

    The Uttar Pradesh government has approached the Centre for its approval to rename Bareilly airport to 'Nath Nagri', which is believed to be an ancient name of the city which had worshippers of Lord Shiva. It has also proposed renaming Kanpur's Chakeri airport after freedom fighter Ganesh Shankar Vidyarthi and Agra airport after RSS leader Deendayal Upadhyaya. 

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced manned space mission taking Indian astronauts to space on board 'Gaganyaan' by 2022

    The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) will have two unmanned missions and spacecraft will be launched using GSLV Mark-III. GSLV Mark III launch vehicle will be fully equipped with crew module and life support system for a manned mission in the next two years.  If successful, India would be fourth nation to achieve that feat.

    Assam rejected Centres move in reducing area under AFSPA

    The government of Assam has declined the Centre’s move in reducing the ‘disturbed areas’ under the Armed Forces Special Power Act (AFSPA).  On July 19, the parliamentary committee headed by P.Chidambaram, former Union Finance Minister and senior Congress leader, reported that by improving the security situation in most northeast States the government should gradually reduce the area under AFSPA, especially in the States of Assam and Meghalaya. But the Assam government did not concur as it said that was not the right time to reduce the area under AFSPA. AFSPA: AFSPA provides power to the Army and Central forces personnel deployed in disturbed areas to kill anyone acting in contravention of the law, arrest and search any premises without a warrant and provide cover to forces from prosecution and legal suits without the Centre’s sanction.

    British police returned the Bronze Buddha statue to ASI

    British police have returned a 12th-century bronze Buddha statue which was stolen from Bihar in 1961 to the Indian High Commission in London. The statue along with 13 other statues were stolen 57 years ago from the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) site museum in Nalanda.  The bronze Buddha statue was identified at a trade fair in London in March 2018. The Metropolitan Police’s Art and Antiques Unit reviewed the idol and ASI confirmed the idol’s identity. The British Police has agreed to return it to ASI.

    Godrej's Smita Crishna tops list of India's wealthiest women

    Smitha V. Crishna, a third-generation heir of the Godrej family, ranks first in the Kotak Wealth Hurun-Leading Wealthy Women 2018 list with an estimated wealth of ₹ 37,570 crore. Roshni Nadar, CEO and executive director at HCL, ranks second in the list with an estimated wealth of ₹30,200 crore. Indu Jain, the chairperson of the Times Group, ranks third in the list  with an estimated wealth of ₹26,240 crore.

    Rifleman Aurangzeb, Major Aditya Kumar conferred to Shaurya Chakra

    President Ram Nath Kovind approved these names on the eve of Independence Day along with three Bar to Sena Medals (Gallantry), 93 Sena Medals (Gallantry) and, 11 Nao Sena Medals (Gallantry). He also conferred Vayu Sena Medal (Gallantry) to Group Captain Abhishek Sharma, Squadron Leader Vernon Desmond Keane and Sergeant Shashidhar P Prasad.

    India released 470 Million Nepali Rupees Grant For Terai Roads Project In Nepal

    Indian Ambassador to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri handed over a cheque of the grant to Secretary, Ministry of Physical Infrastructure and Transport of Nepal, Madhusudan Adhikari in Kathmandu, Nepal.  The amount has been released to maintain fund liquidity for the ongoing construction of 14 road packages under Postal Highway Project.

    Delhi vehicles to get blue sticker for petrol and orange for diesel

    For better tackling of air pollution related issues in the Delhi, Supreme Court has approved the central government's proposal to use hologram-based colour-coded stickers for vehicles in Delhi based on the fuel used. The vehicles that run on petrol and CNG will have light blue stickers, while the diesel vehicles will have orange stickers. The scheme is based on a model used in Paris.

    Pineapple festival organised in Manipur's Thayong

    A 10-day pineapple festival showcasing different varieties of the fruit has been organised in Manipur's Thayong village, which produces 20-30 tonnes of pineapple in a year. The Thayong village has a population of approximately 750 people with more than 90 percent of their major sources of income lying in farming of pineapple.

    India gifted 30 ambulances, 6 buses and books to Nepal on Independence Day

    On the occasion of India's 72nd Independence Day, India gifted 30 ambulances, six buses to Nepalese hospitals, charitable organisations and educational institutions. India also gifted books to 68 schools and libraries across Nepal. At a function organised at the Indian Embassy in Kathmandu, Indian ambassador to Nepal Manjeev Singh Puri also hoisted the Indian flag and read out a message by Indian President Ram Nath Kovind. On the occasion, Puri also felicitated widows and wards of deceased soldiers of the Indian Armed Forces by distributing cheques worth 53.5 million Nepalese rupees.

    In Assam, Gujarat, Giant National Flags Unfurled On 72nd Independence Day

    An 1100 feet-long, 9 feet-wide tricolour flag was unfurled with thousands of people taking part in a 5km-long 'Shaan-e-Tiranga' rally, organised by the Agrawal Vikas Trust. This was the biggest 'Tiranga Yatra' organised in Gujarat so far. A 3.5 kilometre long Tricolour was made in Assam's Uparkhuti village by a local club for Independence Day. The large flag was made to arouse national pride among the youngsters and honour the Assam Athlete Hima Das, who is the first Indian to win a gold medal in a track event at the World Junior Athletics Championship in Finland this year.

    Vienna named world's most liveable city, Melbourne at 2nd

    For the first time, Austria's capital Vienna has topped the Economist Intelligence Unit's Global Liveability Index for 2018, beating Australian city Melbourne, which had topped the list for the past seven years. Osaka in Japan came third followed by Calgary in Canada while Sydney is fifth. Syrian city Damascus was placed at the bottom of the list.

    Film Actor Akshay Kumar Becomes Brand Ambassador For Road Safety Campaigns

    Union Minister for Road Transport & Highways, Shipping, Water Resources, River Development and Ganga Rejuvenation Nitin Gadkari launched three short films for generating public awareness towards road safety.  Akshay Kumar featured in these films, which are directed by Shri R.Balki.

    NITI Aayog Launches Pitch To MOVE

    It is a mobility pitch competition that aims to provide budding entrepreneurs of India a unique opportunity to pitch their business ideas to a distinguished jury. The main aim is to identify and incentivise the startups, which will help the Government realize its vision of Shared, Connected, Intermodal and Environment-Friendly Mobility for India.   

    India, Chinese army officials held Border Personnel Meeting

    The Chinese People's Liberation Army (PLA) held a ceremonial Border Personnel Meeting (BPM) in the Daulat Beg Oldie (DBO) area along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) in Ladakh sector of Jammu and Kashmir. The meeting was led by Brigadier JKS Virk from the Indian side and Senior Colonel Chen Zheng Shan from the Chinese side.  The meeting was to mark India’s Independence Day. It was the first time such an event has happened between the two armies. The occasion was marked by a salute to the Chinese flag and was followed by ceremonial addresses by the leaders of the two delegations. The BPM ended with a feeling of friendship and commitment towards enhancing the existing cordial relations and maintaining peace along the LAC.

    Karnataka government to construct 11 vented dams across Dakshina Kannada

    U.T. Khader, district minister in-charge of Dakshina Kannada, Karnataka, announced that the Minor Irrigation Department is to construct 11 vented dams across west-flowing rivers in Dakshina Kannada. This plan will be executed under the Paschima Vahini project. The Karnataka government has proposed to spend Rs.265.25 crore for the construction of vented dams in the district.

    India now world's 6th largest economy, says PM Modi on Independance day

    Addressing the nation on the 72nd Independence Day, PM Narendra Modi said, 'India has registered its name as the sixth largest economy in the world.' In 2013, India used to be counted as part of the ‘Fragile Five’ in the world. But today, India is seen as a destination for multi-billion dollar investments. This was the Prime Minister Modi's fifth and the last Independence Day speech before the 2019 general elections.

    Former Indian skipper Ajit Wadekar passed away

    Former Indian Skipper Ajit Wadekar, 77 years old,  passed away on 15th August. Due to his ill health, he was hospitalized since the month of July.  He played for the Indian national team between 1966 and 1974. He was the first Indian captain to achieve overseas wins while touring the West Indies and England in 1971. India won over five matches in the West Indies in the early 1970s and then defeated England over three. He has been awarded the Arjuna Award (1967) and Padmashri (1972).

    Union Minister Rajnath Singh inaugurated NDMC Smart City Projects

    These projects are undertaken by the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC).  The inauguration was done by Union Minister Rajnath Singh  The projects include Smart Poles, Solar Tree, Ideation Centre, 50 LED interactive screens, Ambedkar Vatika and various other things.  

    Indias first genetic bank for wildlife conservation inaugurated in Hyderabad

    It is India’s first genetic resource bank where the genetic material will be stored for posterity which will further the cause of conservation of endangered species. It is equipped with sophisticated equipment to preserve the genetic resources that could be utilized to virtually resurrect an animal species. Laboratory of Conservation of Endangered Species (LaCONES) developed a universal DNA based marker for identification of wild animals from parts and remains.

    Karnataka government to launch Green Mysuru drive on 15th August

    The Forest Department of Karnataka is to launch a Green Mysuru drive on 15th August 2018 under Hasiru Karnataka programme. The aim is to increase the tree cover of the city and the district. The program involves planting saplings in vacant spaces of government offices and schools, available space on the roadside, embankment abutting farmland and agricultural fields, courtyards etc.  The drive considers the participation public as its key success of the programme. A total of 100,000 saplings have been prepared in various nurseries of the Forest Department.  In the year 2018-19, the Forest Department has distributed around 22.21 lakh saplings and 17.18 lakh tree guards to the public. As per the National Forest Policy, at least 33% of the land area should be under green cover wherein Karnataka has the green cover of 22.56%.

    Haryana to inaugurate its first licensed Hisar Airport

    The airport will be inaugurated on August 15 by Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar. The team informed that the airport selected by the Ministry of Civil Aviation under the RCS-UDAN Scheme in which one airline namely M/s Pinnacle Airways Limited have bid for two routes namely Delhi-Hisar and Hisar-Chandigarh.

    State Bank of India ranked As Indias Most Patriotic Brand

    According to the survey conducted by UK-based online market research and data analytics firm, *YouGov* Country's largest lender State Bank of India (SBI) is considered to be the most patriotic brand, followed by Tata Motors, Patanjali, Reliance Jio and BSNL. The survey, which covered 152 brands across 11 categories, is based on data collected online by YouGov Omnibus among 1,193 respondents in the country.

    Indian Navy launched 'Operation Madad' in flood hit Kerala

    The Southern Naval Command (SNC) launched 'Operation Madad' for assisting the Kerala administration and undertaking disaster relief operations due to the unprecedented flooding experienced in many parts of Kerala. All the five gates of the Idukki (Cherurhoni) Dam in Kerala have been opened for the first time in 26 years, due to heavy rain and flooding. The Idukki Dam system is constructed across the river Periyar.

    CAG reported about the lack of facilities in Submarine training

    The Comptroller and Auditor-General (CAG) observed that there are no facilities available for training the Navy crew on various aspects of damage control and firefighting in a submarine.  CAG submitted a report in Parliament saying the government has not approved the proposal submitted by Submarine headquarters in April 2014 yet. The proposal indicated the necessary requirement of a simulator to train in damage control and firefighting, which are assumed with greater importance as India to set to acquire nuclear submarines into its fleet. Currently, the Navy is in the process of buying two deep submergence rescue vessel systems from a U.K.-based firm.  The report also highlighted delays in the completion of the Naval Academy Project at Ezhimala, non-availability of training equipment for new induction platforms, a deficiency in the quality of training and other issues.

    EIA of Nauroji Nagar project has been found plagiarised

    The government has recently approved for the redevelopment of Nauroji Nagar project. An analysis by environmental activists and researchers says there is plagiarism in a few portions of the approved Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) plan. EIA is used to obtain permission for the redevelopment of Nauroji Nagar. The Nauroji Nagar project was one among the projects that are awarded to National Buildings Construction Corporation (NBCC), a public sector company. The aim of the project was to set up residential and commercial buildings over 571 acres in south Delhi.

    Pune ranked first in Ease of Living Index 2018; Delhi at 65

    Of total 111 cities ranked under the 'Ease of Living Index 2018' which was released by Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, Pune has been ranked first while Navi Mumbai has surfaced as the second preferred spot in terms of 'liveability'. Top 10 cities in 'Ease of Living Index' 2018 list are: ♦ 1- Pune; ♦ 2- Navi Mumbai; ♦ 3- Greater Mumbai; ♦ 4- Tirupati; ♦ 5- Chandigarh; ♦ 6- Thane; ♦ 7- Raipur; ♦ 8- Indore; ♦ 9- Vijaywada; ♦ 10- Bhopal.

    Rajasthan's Jodhpur railway station ranked as India's cleanest

    In a cleanliness report released by the Ministry of Railways, Jodhpur and Jaipur of North Western Railway in Rajasthan captured the first two spots in the A1 Category stations. Tirupati, an important site for religious tourism and in South Central Railway, ranked third. Rajasthan's Marwar topped among the A Category railway stations, followed by Phulera and Warangal. There are over 8,000 stations on the Indian Railway network and they are classified into seven categories: A-1, A, B, C, D, E and F based on their annual passenger revenue.

    PM Modi announces Rs. 1,000 crore financial aid for IIT Bombay

    Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Bombay will get this financial aid under the status of Institution of Eminence (IoE). Prime Minister Modi also inaugurated the new building of the Department of Energy Science and Engineering and Centre for Environmental Science and Engineering at IIT Bombay. He stated that, in the last four years, seven IITs, seven IIMs (Indian Institute of Management), two IISER (Indian Institutes of Science Education and Research) and 11 IIITs (Indian Institute of Information Technology) have been approved.

    Justice Manjula Chellur is New Chairperson Of Appellate Tribunal For Electricity

    Manjula Chellur was Chief Justice of Bombay High Court. She was the first woman Chief Justice of Calcutta High Court.

    Tomorrow India is going to celebrate 72nd Independence Day

    On 15th of August in 1947, India got freedom from the British rule after long years of slavery. President of India gives a speech every year in order to 'Address to the Nation' on the evening of a day before the Independence Day. On 15th August, the Prime Minister of India hoists the Indian flag on the Red Fort, Delhi. After the flag hoisting, National Anthem song is sung and twenty-one gun shots are fired to salute and honour the Indian flag and solemn occasion. What does the three colours of the Indian National Flag signify? ♦ Saffron refers to the strength and courage of the country; ♦ White signifies peace and truth. ♦ Green color is symbolic of the fertility of the land. The tricolour flag was adapted as the Indian National Flag on July 22, 1947. Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of independent India is also the longest reigning Prime Minister of the country with 16 years and 286 days at the office.

    IT Minister released Digital North East Vision 2022 In Guwahati

    The document 'Digital North East Vision 2022' emphasizes on digital technologies to transform the lives of people of the northeast and enhance the ease of living. Our Union  Minister for Electronics & Information Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad released the document. The Document identifies eight digital thrust areas - Digital Infrastructure, Digital services, Digital empowerment, Promotion of Electronics Manufacturing, Promotion of IT and ITES including BPOs, Digital Payments, Innovation & Startups, and Cybersecurity.

    India gets its first all women 'SWAT' unit

    Ahead of the Independence Day, the Delhi Police inducted India's first all-woman Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) team for anti-terrorist operations. 36 women commandos from the northeastern states have been inducted into this squad. While 13 members are from Assam, rest of them hail from Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim and Manipur.

    UIDAI clarified peoples worry on Aadhaar misuse

    The Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) has introduced a user outreach to create awareness among the people about the dos and don’ts of sharing their biometric identifier. The introduction of UIDAI is to make Aadhaar number and other personal information such as PAN (Permanent Account Number) and bank account number parallel.  The awareness is aimed at cautioning users against placing their private details in the public domain, particularly on digital platforms. UIDAI has planned to provide detailed Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) which will address nearly six queries on an issue that were highly debated.  It also confirmed that by knowing about the small details of Aadhaar cannot harm an individual or be misused for impersonation, as it is protected by various security layers such as biometrics and one-time password authentication.

    Nepal-India Literature Festival 2018 commenced at Birgunj

    The festival was inaugurated by Chief Minister of Province 2 Mohammad Lal Babu Raut.  The main aim of the festival is to strengthen Indo-Nepal ties.  Around 250 participants from India and Nepal attending the two-day festival.

    Indian Railways to stop free travel insurance from September 1

    Indian Railways Catering and Tourism Corporation (IRCTC) has decided to stop free travel insurance starting September 1 and "free insurance will be optional". The insurance provided by the IRCTC had a maximum cover of Rs. 10 lakh in case of a person's death during a train journey, Rs. 7.5 lakh if a person is disabled due to an accident, Rs. 2 lakh if injured and Rs. 10,000 for transportation of mortal remains.

    Fall Armyworm spreads at a rapid pace in Karnataka

    The Fall Armyworm (Spodoptera frugiperda), an invasive agricultural pest, which was found in Shivamogga district is now spreading at a rapid pace in Karnataka. This has alarmed the State, as its presence has been reported in more than nine agro-climatic zones in Karnataka. Also, few incidents have been reported from Tirupati and a village in Chandragiri Mandal of Chittoor district of Andhra Pradesh.  The lifespan of the Fall Armyworm is 30 to 60 days. Each generation can migrate to a distance of more than 400 km. The fertility rate of this pest is high. Immediately after noticing the infestation, the farmers have been directed to use Lambda-Cyhalothrin or Carbofuran pesticide spraying to control the pest. After this measures, the plants have been known to recover and their growth is normal.

    Former Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee Passed Away

    He served as the Speaker of the Lower House from 2004-09 when Manmohan Singh-led UPA- 1 (United Progressive Alliance). He was 89 years old.

    Haryana Government to launch Ayushman Bharat scheme on Aug 15

    The main aim of the scheme to provide cashless healthcare facilities to beneficiaries at empanelled hospitals.  The scheme would be initially implemented on a pilot basis in one government hospital in each of the 22 districts, one ESI hospital and one medical college.  Under the scheme, families identified by the Socio-Economic and Caste Census (SECC) would be provided with coverage of Rs 5 lakh.  

    India to launch its second lunar mission Chandrayaan-2 on January 3 next year

    Indian Space Research Organisation(ISRO)is aiming to launch the mission but the window to land on the lunar surface is open till March 2019.  The 800-crore rupees is the overall cost of lunar mission named “Chandrayaan-2” The 3,890-kg Chandrayaan-2, which will be launched onboard the Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle Mk-3, will orbit around the moon.

    Bajaj Allianz General Insurance and Vijaya Bank entered into Bancassurance Deal

    This corporate agreement will enable distribution of Bajaj Allianz General Insurance products through the bank’s network of 2,129 branches across the country.  Bajaj Allianz General Insurance will offer personal lines of insurance products such as health, personal accident, home, motor and travel along with a commercial line of insurance products.  

    CJI inaugurated the new court complex in Hubballi

    The Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra inaugurated the new court complex in Hubballi, Karnataka.  During the ceremony, the CJI has suggested the government to appoint graduates from specialised disciplines, other than law, in district courts in order to ensure speedy dispensation of justice. He said that MBA graduates can be appointed as court managers so that they could operate as facilitators of cases, plan the hearing of different cases and so on. He also said that the courts should have the best available technology so that it can aid the public efficiently.

    Axis Bank introduced first Of Its Kind Iris Authentication for Aadhaar-Based Transactions

    Iris scan technology is totally contactless and provides up to 98.2 per cent authentication success rate (as per study conducted by the International Centre for Biometric Research) and offers an edge over other prevalent biometric modes. Axis Bank presently running a pilot program for its customers at eight branches in rural segment largely covering areas of Punjab, Haryana, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh.  

    Israel Opened Visa Application Centre In Kolkata

    Israel recently announced a reduction in visa fees to INR 1,100 rupees from its previous 1,700 charged from Indians. India recorded a half-yearly growth of 82 percent as compared to the same period in 2015 and has become one of the best-performing markets in Asia for Israel.  

    ISRO plans to telecast its own ISRO TV Channel

    The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) is planning to celebrate Vikram Sarabhai centenary celebration starting in August 2019. This is to honour the visionary scientist and its legendary founding father Vikram Sarabhai.  As a part of its celebration, ISRO has planned to telecast a dedicated ISRO TV channel to showcase ISRO's space applications, developments and science issues. It aims at targeting youngsters and the people in remote areas in their language. It has also planned to organise a series of activities nationally and internationally to commemorate the great international scientist. The initial outlay for the planned events costs up to Rs.50 crore. Vikram Sarabhai, the architect of the Indian space programme, the first ISRO chief and renowned cosmic ray scientist, was born on August 12, 1919. 

    NITI Aayog Hosts Investors Conference in Andaman & Nicobar, And Lakshadweep Islands

    This NITI Aayog conference was inaugurated by Amitabh Kant, CEO of NITI Aayog.  The 11 anchor tourism projects are proposed to be implemented with private sector participation under the suitable risk-sharing model and through open-competitive bidding.

    PayPal and HDFC Bank Partner To Offer Seamless Payment Experiences

    To initiate incremental digital spend, the HDFC cards will be presented as a payment option during enrollment and subsequent payments with the ability for consumers to easily open PayPal accounts and set it as their preferred payment method.  This partnership will create a number of joint growth opportunities that will advance PayPal and HDFC Bank's shared vision of offering consumers greater choice and flexibility.

    Three northeastern States emerge as new HIV hotspots

    According to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Meghalaya, Mizoram and Tripura have emerged as the new hotspots for HIV. In terms of persons living with HIV (PLHIV) who are on Anti-Retroviral Treatment (ART), Maharashtra has the highest number (with 2.03 lakh persons) followed by A.P.(1.78 lakh ) and Karnataka (1.58 lakh persons).

    Delhi High Court decriminalises begging

    Delhi High Court struck down a legal provision that criminalises begging in the national capital. The petitioners, Harsh Mandar and Karnika Sawhney, sought basic amenities like proper food and medical facilities at all beggars’ homes in the city. Currently, there is no central law on begging and destitution and most states have adopted the Bombay Prevention of Begging Act, 1959, which criminalises beggary or have modelled their laws on it. The two petitions have challenged the Bombay Prevention of Begging Act.

    Govt hikes import duty on 328 textile items to boost domestic production

    Under Section 159 of the Customs Act, 1962, the Government increased customs duty on 328 tariff lines of textile products from the existing rate of 10 per cent to 20 per cent, to provide a boost to manufacturing of these items in India. A notification to this effect was tabled by minister of state for finance Pon Radhakrishnan in the Lok Sabha. The government last month had doubled import duty on over 50 textile products - including jackets, suits and carpets - to 20 per cent.

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